Celebrating 40 Years of Impact
Since 1982, IREC has made clean energy possible for millions of Americans through cutting-edge policy and workforce solutions that advance renewable energy, electric grid modernization, and energy efficiency.
IREC’s independent voice, policy expertise, and national insight have helped inform and guide regulatory proceedings across the U.S. to build consensus-based, viable solutions that enable higher penetrations of distributed energy resources and streamline the process of connecting to the grid.
“IREC started out as a pioneer in advancing the national transition to clean energy sources,” said Larry Sherwood, President and CEO at IREC. “Today, we’re proud to continue this cutting-edge work as carbon-free technologies move firmly into the mainstream. We are equally proud of IREC’s leadership role in bringing together diverse people and organizations to advance common goals.”
Expanding the adoption of clean energy has the power to benefit everyday Americans from all walks of life. A clean energy future will create hundreds of thousands of jobs, build local economies, and help more people access clean, affordable electricity that is essential to the fight against climate change.
Today, our work continues in response to the urgent need to transition to clean energy. Explore our new timeline spanning 40 years of IREC’s impact—as we continue to work to mitigate climate change, improve the resiliency of our communities, and ensure all people benefit from a just transition to a clean energy future!
Did You Know About These IREC Milestones?
From helping to shape some of the first solar net metering policies—programs that kickstarted the solar industry—to helping launch NABCEP, a leading solar training provider, IREC has been helping to shape clean energy in America since the early days of the industry!
Explore a few of our many milestones below, and click here to download a comprehensive timeline of our work over the last 40 years!
- 1982: IREC incorporated
- 1995: IREC and North Carolina Solar Center launch DSIRE–Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency
- 2002: IREC works with stakeholders to create North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP)
- 2003: Net Metering Model Rules–first edition publishes
- 2006: First Inspection Guidelines for PV Systems publishes
- 2007: State regulatory hearings project launches
- 2010: First National Solar Jobs Census publishes*
- 2013: FERC releases rule changes for more efficient interconnections of small renewable energy systems based on IREC recommendations
- 2013: IREC Recognized as Accredited Standards Developer by American National Standards Institute
- 2014: Solar Ready Vets Network forms*
- 2016: SolSmart launches*
- 2018: IREC and The Solar Foundation help launch the SolarAPP+ project as founding partners
- 2019: The Puerto Rican Solar Business Accelerator (PRSBA) forms*
- 2019: First Vision Summit
- 2020: IREC begins leading the Sustainable Energy Action Committee (SEAC)
- 2020: California PUC issues sweeping changes to Rule 21 interconnection rules, based on IREC recommendations
- 2021: IREC and The Solar Foundation merge operations
- 2022: IREC’s Toolkit and Guidance for the Interconnection of Energy Storage and Solar-Plus-Storage (“BATRIES Toolkit”) publishes
*Highlights from The Solar Foundation before its merger with IREC
Explore a Few of Our Key Impacts
Shaping the Clean Energy Regulatory Landscape
For 40 years, IREC’s independent voice, policy expertise, and national insight have helped inform and guide regulatory proceedings in 42 states and Puerto Rico across the U.S.
Through our regulatory engagement, IREC shapes consensus-based, viable solutions that enable higher penetrations of distributed energy resources and streamline the process of connecting to the grid.
Training the Clean Energy Workforce
IREC’s acclaimed training and credentialing programs are leading the growth of a skilled and diverse clean energy workforce.
More than 25,000 IREC courses have been taken for professionals in a variety of sectors, including firefighters, apartment maintenance technicians, and code officials.
These courses are designed to directly impact on-the-job performance, and arm a wide range of professionals with credible, fact-based information about clean energy.
Helping Job Seekers Understand Clean Energy Opportunities
IREC’s Career Maps are unique, interactive tools that job seekers can use to explore the many diverse careers offered across the growing clean energy industries, as well as various routes for advancement.
They can also empower educators, career advisors, employers, and workforce professionals to showcase the wide range of careers in these sectors and how prospective job seekers can get them.
IREC published the Solar Career Map in 2015, the HVAC/R Career Map in 2019, and the Green Buildings Career Map in 2020.
Since then, more than 150,000 users have accessed these career maps!
Helping Communities Across the U.S. Become “Open for Solar Business”
The SolSmart team of experts, which was first led by the Solar Foundation and has since merged with IREC, provides no-cost technical assistance to help communities become “open for solar business.”
There are currently 479 communities in the U.S. from Alaska to Puerto Rico that are SolSmart designated, and the number keeps climbing!
We thank you for your support these last 40 years, and we look forward to what’s to come!
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